What a roller coaster two weeks it has been for Syracuse athletics fans. A dominant performance for the Men’s Football Team vs. Wake then a gut wrencher vs. Clemson. You simply cannot lose a game that you gain 4 turnovers in, but we did on Saturday. That one may come back to haunt us.
Everyone was also given a chance to see the pride and joy of Syracuse for the first time this year, the Mens Basketball Team, and we ask former player Eric Devendorf to share with us his thoughts on the 2014-2015 squad.
First off, what a performance by the Football team against Wake. Syracuse dominated every facet of the game and showed that a defense can carry a team. Scoring two defensive touchdowns and surrendering only 170 total yards to Wake is exactly the kind of football I am used to seeing from a Scott Schafer team. The defense continued their dominance as they looked the tigers right in the eye for the entire game. The defense showed their guts two weeks in a row and they are certainly worth the price of admission. If we can find a rhythm on offense we still have a shot a bowl game. Also a huge shout out to Sean Hickey. He held Vic Beasely in line all night and looks like a top Draft Pick this summer similar to Justin Pugh
I also continue to be very encouraged by the freshman we have playing on the offensive side of the ball. Need proof our recruiting is getting better? True freshman accounted for 75% of the Orange’s total offense against Wake. That’s a number I like to see. Sure, AJ Long and Steve Ishmael took a step back against Clemson, but that Tiger defense may very well be the best unit in America.
It’s going to be very difficult to convince me that AJ Long will not make a run for the starting job next fall. There will most definitely be a QB competition this summer and I can’t wait to see it. I for one don’t believe that Alin Edouard will ever suit up for the team so this comes down to Hunt and Long. Terrell Hunt is a great athlete that I believe can thrive at many spots on the field. AJ Long is a great quarterback who can be a tremendous asset to this program. Only time will tell, but it is something to ponder as the weeks go on.
The time is also approaching for the Syracuse Men’s Basketball team to take the court. The engineered nonsense that is Midnight Madness always is an event on the hill and this year we got to see two new toys in Chris McCullough and Kaleb Joseph. I personally like that we are ranked #24 in the preseason poll. I want there to be fewer expectations for the team so there is no early season pressure to live up to. When you break in two freshman starters, it takes some time. I look for Trevor Cooney and Tyler Roberson to carry this squad early in the year. McCullough looks like the freaky athlete that will thrive in the Syracuse zone and up-tempo run and gun offense. Look for him to get up to speed and take over once ACC play starts. He really has me excited.
I wanted to get an insider perspective for readers this week regarding our Men’s team and I asked Eric Devendorf to share his thoughts on this team. Devendorf, who had back surgery in June, is rehabbing in Syracuse. When asked about our point guard spot, Devendorf thinks, “It’s tough to replace a guy like Ennis, but Joseph is a good young talent who is more up-tempo and athletic then Tyler.” Devendorf also shared that “this team is very young and talented and I expect some ups and downs but overall I expect another tournament run and great overall season.”
As for this week’s Syracuse Football Stock Index, we saw a 30 point surge to 74 after the Wake game. Outliers that week were the defense who received 35/30 points for their outstanding performance, AJ Long , Steve Ishmael and Devante McFarlane receiving 4/4 points. As for Clemson, the team slipped a bit to 60. The defense received 40/45 points as the only outlier. Overall, the team is hovering at a healthy rate and is trending in the right direction. Better offensive execution and some better overall coaching would do a lot for the value of this program.
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